Chile is Latin America’s most competitive economy

A report from the World Economic Forum praised the South American nation’s transparency and sophisticated financial markets.

1_08092011_25650_comp550

Chile has maintained its position as the most competitive economy in Latin America and the Caribbean, according to a report from the World Economic Forum (WEF).

The South American nation came in at number 31 on the Global Competitiveness Report of 2010-2011, which ranks 142 countries from around the world.

The international ranking was decided according to 12 broad categories designed to provide a comprehensive overview of national competitiveness. The results were calculated from publicly available data and an annual survey taken by more than 14,000 business leaders earlier in the year.

In the report, the WEF attributed Chile’s strong position to its “solid institutional framework and high level of confidence in the rule of law.”

It added that Chile’s transparency and prudent fiscal policy have created “solid bases” for constant growth since the beginning of the 1990s, which in turn have led to strong income growth.

The report also highlighted the opening up of Chile’s financial markets, its adoption of high competition standards and its flexible labor market, while describing the country’s financial systems as “sophisticated and efficient.”

At the same time, the WEF said Chile could strengthen its position even further by investing more in research and development and by supporting more innovation.

The international organization said the biggest challenge for Chile over the coming decade will be in education, particularly in the areas related to mathematics and science.

Other competitive economies in Latin America region include Puerto Rico, which was ranked 35th on the WEF list, and Barbados, which was ranked 42nd. The only other Latin American country to make the top 50 was Panama, in 49th place.

According to the report, the most competitive economy in the world is Switzerland followed by Singapore and Sweden. Making up the top 10 are Finland, the United States, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, Japan and the United Kingdom.

This post is also available in Spanish